Isiah Thomas made news again this past week when he said he dreams of replacing Donnie Walsh "every day of the week." The deluded former leader of the New York Knicks also claimed if he were still around (if it weren't for that pesky sexual harassment suit he'd still be here, he theorized), LeBron James would be a Knick right now, one of the reasons being the team would have a couple of playoff appearances under their belt by now. He continued to say he dreams of winning a championship with the Knicks and riding on a float up the Canyon of Heroes.
Though he actually may face suspension if he ever returns to the NBA, he wasn't done with those outlandish fantasies. He also stated that he dreams of managing the New York Mets, but those thoughts only pop up on Mondays and Wednesdays. On Fridays, he dreams of getting more presents from Santa Claus than all the other middle-aged men on his block. On the weekends, he fantasizes about being a player/coach with the Devils, leading them to the Stanley Cup, wherein he will then become the king of New Jersey and build that tunnel that commuters desperately need with his own money. And on Tuesdays and Thursdays, he closes his eyes and pretends he's Stewie from Family Guy. And he and Brian would ride on the float together when the Knicks won their mythical championship.
Donnie Walsh has responded by saying he will never retire, and would even continue running the team from the grave if that's what it took to keep Thomas away from New York. But let's not forget: James Dolan once had delusions of owning the Knicks, and look what happened.
And now on to the top stories of the week in the world of New York sports:
On a Roll: The Eli Manning was like a robotic killing machine, completing one pass after another with ease. Hakeem Nicks, Steve Smith, Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs did whatever they wanted to do on the field all afternoon. And the defense is proving to be one of the best in the league. They made Charlie Whitehurst look like he was starting his first NFL game, which of course he was; he never had a chance. But Big Blue didn't come out of the game unscathed, as David Diehl's iron man streak will end this Sunday due to hamstring and hip injuries and Adam Koets is out for the year with a torn ACL. And now it looks like Smith is a no-go for Sunday, also, with a strained pec muscle.are now tied with a handful of other teams for the best record in the NFL. And they're playing like it, too. It was absolute domination in Seattle on Sunday, from the opening whistle to the final play. Poise in the noise? What noise?
Working Overtime: The Jets' comeback victory on Sunday was exciting. It was dramatic. It was spine-tingling. It was impressive. But weren't these Jets supposed to be dominating? Where's the No. 1-ranked D of last season? And their offense, with all those weapons and a maturing Mark Sanchez, has to be better than this, doesn't it? Where's the ground and pound? The Jets field goal'd their way past Minnesota, escaped by the hair on their chinny chin chin in Denver, were whitewashed against Green Bay and snuck by Detroit. Should we be worried? But let's give the Jets a little credit; they're resilient and they find a way to win, and winning is really all that matters. It sure was fun watching Ndamukong Suh try to kick that extra point, though. It was a reminder of the prehistoric days when teams didn't employ a full-time kicker, and a lineman, defensive back or whoever had the strongest leg did all the kicking. And it was just the Jets' luck that that one point was the difference in getting to overtime. The question for this week is: Will Rex Ryan where that wig and Browns getup on the sidelines on Sunday?
Baby Steps: With almost a complete roster overhaul, it's going to take time for the Knicks to find themselves. So far it's been one step forward (the 112-91 win over Washington on Friday) and two steps back--or maybe three (the sluggish defeat to the Sixers, the first-quarter drubbing in Milwaukee and the inability to close out Golden State on Wednesday). The return of David Lee wasn't quite up to Eddie Giacomin levels--Knick fans didn't root for Golden State to win the game after all--but just like when the Red Wings and Giacomin beat the , Lee and his Warriors defeated the Knicks. Lee got a well-deserved standing O, and knocked out one of Wilson Chandler's teeth for good measure. I don't recall Pete Stemkowski losing a chicklet in the Giacomin game. And why did Amar'e Stoudemire pass up that three with seconds left in the game? Isn't that why he came to the Knicks, to take the big shot at the end?
Five for Fighting: After getting stomped by the Florida duo of Orlando and Miami over the weekend, the New Jersey Nets made it their mission to get tougher. It took Terrence Williams doing his Tiger Williams impression on LeBron James for them to see the light. Avery Johnson immediately set up a scrimmage with the Philadelphia Flyers to get some pointers and insert some grit into their game. Unfortunately, they went out and lost to the Cavaliers, and neglected to even start a bench-clearing brawl. But Kris Humphries threw his weight around the next night, as he led his team to a win over Cleveland in a home-and-home.
On the Ice: The Rangers started and ended the week positively, with Henrik Lundqvist's fifth career shutout of the Devils and last night's 3-2 overtime win over Buffalo. In between they were shut out by St. Louis for the first time ever, which goes all the way back to 1967, and lost to the Capitals on Tuesday. The big events for the Blueshirts this week included the return of Marian Gaborik on Thursday, goals being scored by players not named Brandon Dubinsky the last two games and Derek Boogaard netting his first goal since 2006. It was all by design, though, as the pugilist has just been picking his spots. Last night in San Jose, the Islanders picked up their first point since October 21, but they still lost again. It's their ninth consecutive defeat. As for the Devils, well, they did it--their 0-5-2 record at the Rock is the longest home winless streak since they've been known as the Devils. The puck sliding harmlessly off Ilya Kovalchuk's stick to end the shootout on Wednesday night pretty much sums up the whole season for the hapless Devils.
Revenge of the Nerds: Now that Sandy Alderson has brought in his pencil-necked, geeky friends to run the Mets, will a brawl break out over a misplaced pocket protector? The new posse will be a refreshing change of pace from the last gang who couldn't shoot straight, though. There's actually a chance for the team to have a well-thought-out plan, vision and philosophy, based on sound judgment and reason. It's an exciting new era, and Met fans won't have to cringe every time a member of the front office speaks in public. Unfortunately, Hisanori Takahashi was let go. His contract demands may have been too much, but he sure was a versatile, reliable and valuable reliever to have around. The manager search continues. Outside candidates DeMarlo Hale, Don Wakamatsu and Clint Hurdle interviewed this week, while the in-house Wally Backman, Chip Hale and Terry Collins had the chance to state their case last weekend. Ken Oberkfell also gets his chance soon. And somewhat unrelated to the Mets, it's now safe to watch Sunday Night Baseball, as a sabermetrician's dream come true came true--Joe Morgan was dumped by ESPN. I'll miss Jon Miller just a little, though. He was a good-hearted, jolly fellow.
Yankees Hodgepodge: Before flying off to Arkansas to meet with Cliff Lee, Brian Cashman informed Jorge Posada that he'll be the full-time DH next season, surely making Yankee fans happy. Speaking of defensively challenged players, Derek Jeter managed to snag yet another Gold Glove. Sure, he hardly made any errors in 2010, but his lack of range left him with fewer chances compared to other shortstops around the league. Mark Teixeira and Robinson Cano were also winners, but those two were a little more deserving. The Hall of Fame ballot is in for next summer's class, and George Steinbrenner, Billy Martin, Ron Guidry and Tommy John are all on the list.
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